Harry Fry is unsure what to make of If The Cap Fits after his stable star charged home from an uncompromising position to pick up minor honours in the Kauto Star Novices’ Chase at Kempton.
The top-class hurdler made a fine start to his career over fences at Ffos Las in October, before finding Nicky Henderson’s Pym too strong in a Listed event at Sandown the following month.
He looked set to finish nearer last than first in his bid for a second Grade One victory on Boxing Day, but made late headway to finish third behind Shan Blue and The Big Breakaway.
Fry said: “We were quite relieved to get the consolation of third prize in the end, because for 98 to 99 per cent of the race he was tailed off and looked like he’d be pulled up.
“It was a very strange run. It shows the ability is there, to run with the handbrake on for the majority of the race and still manage to finish third and be beaten only seven and a half lengths.
“It’s a bit of a head scratcher. The cheek pieces worked for him over hurdles, but whether he’s resenting them over fences, I don’t know.”
When asked where If The Cap Fits could make his next appearance, the trainer added: “We’re thinking of the Reynoldstown at Ascot – there’s nothing set in stone yet, but that’s a potential next target.
“We’ll try to work out how we get the best out of him the next day.”